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Montessori Children Celebrate the Last Days of Winter With Carnival Season, Brazilian Style!

SPRING IS JUST AROUND THE CORNER AND CHILDREN LOVE CELEBRATING "CARNAVAL" WITH SAMBA MUSIC & DANCING WITH SCARVES!

Photo by Jeri-Jo Idarius for Magical Movement Company

This week is Carnival Season all over the globe, and Montessori children can celebrate while learning about  the culture of the Brazilian "Carnaval", ( Portuguese: "Carnaval do Brasil") the largest in the world! The carnival season marks the end of winter and the anticipation of warm Spring days just around the corner.

Photo by the artists at Dollar Photo Club

Since, we always begin our Music Time with singing a Hello Song, the children were delighted to sing "hello" the way it is said in Brazil: 

Photo by the artists at Dollar Photo Club

During our vocal warm-ups, we did our echo rhythms from Frank Leto's, Sambalala. That was a wonderful, fun Samba echo song! Here's that link from his Album at Amazon: "Sambalala" from Time for Music.


After our breathing and vocal warm-ups, we had a fun movement activity with colorful scarves. This music from Johnette Downing's album, The Second Line  has a lively narration of actions for the children to do with their scarves. The "second line" is an important part of the Mardi Gras carnival in New Orleans and so the music is jazzy and perfectly paced for young children while they get a taste of carnival music! Learn more about that by clicking the link.

Photo by Jeri-Jo Idarius for Magical Movement Company

We even continued the scarf activities after we sat down. The selection, Scarves on Your Laps from Johnette's Album is great for developing body coordination and naming parts of the body including left and right sides!

Photo by Jeri-Jo Idarius for Magical Movement Company

The children in the Montessori environment are usually familiar with the land & water globe and I love having one of the little ones fetch the globe and carefully carry it to our circle so that we can find the continent of South America. The children also enjoy seeing a picture of the continent taken from outer space.

Photo by the artists at Dollar Photo Club

You can also point out where the country of Brazil is located on the continent of South America and if you have a flag of Brazil, it is lovely to show the children how to walk on the Montessori Line carrying the Brazilian Flag. You can read more about the classic Montessori activity of children marching on "the line' carrying flags at my past post: Musically Montessori #3: Let's Begin with Walking on the Line and Add Some Challenges! n

Photo by the artists at Dollar Photo Club

When I showed the children this photo, they could get a bit of an idea of just how big a celebration "Carnaval" is in Rio and all over Brazil!


Photo by the artists at Dollar Photo Club

Next, we explored some of the musical instruments that are heard in Samba music from Brazil. Here you can see the cow bell, snare drums, maracas, and "Carnaval whistle". If you happen to have any of these to pass around (except the whistle, of course!) the children really enjoy seeing, feeling and playing an authentic instrument. We passed the cow bell around and the children played it with a short wooden dowel.

Photos from Dollar Photo Club

During our instrument time at Music Circle, I gave the children the choice of playing a tambourine or maracas. The children walked to the baskets in the middle of the circle and made their choices. Then, we all played along to some fabulous Brazilian Samba music.


Photo by the artists at Dollar Photo Club

We even invited children who wanted to really celebrate to get up and dance to the Samba rhythms. The children enjoyed this selection from the album, Putumayo Presents Carnival, "Brazil Canta Canta, Minha Gente". 

Photo by the artists at Dollar Photo Club

In early February, each year all over the world, people are celebrating the end of winter with carnival parades and festivities. There's the trumpet and brass music of New Orleans Mardi Gras:

Photo by the artists at Dollar Photo Club

I found this adorable picture of a little one at the Carnival Parade in France.

Photo by the artists at Dollar Photo Club

Masks are a beautiful part of the carnival season, and I have always offered a little mask making art project for the children to make the celebrating even more fun. Then, we all put on our masks and dance to the Brazilian Samba music, or the New Orleans Jazz music, or whatever dance music the children like!

Photo by the artists at Dollar Photo Club

A beautiful South American Carnaval mask to welcome the Sun and Spring time!


Photo by the artists at Dollar Photo Club



I JUST POSTED my newest Lesson Plan Activity Pack, AT MY TPT STORE, for exploring the Carnival Season with children. If you are one of my subscribers, I sent you an email with an exclusive freebie download to go along with the Lesson Pack. If you haven't yet subscribed you can do it by clicking on the link to the left!

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"Sambalala, Sambalele...!"




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